“I don’t have time.”
“I’m not a writer.”
“I wouldn’t know where to start.”
“It’s not part of my job.”
These are just a few of the responses we’ve heard, and maybe you have, when asking people who aren’t “content creators” to create content for marketing.
To be fair, they’re pretty legitimate.
Most people who don’t work in content marketing teams don’t have time to create content (they have their own jobs).
Most people aren’t writers and wouldn’t know where to start with writing a blog.
God knows enough professional copywriters can struggle with that one.
Plus, it really isn’t part of their job.
But if you want to create enough content to help with your SEO content strategy, you might need to get your entire involved creating blogs, guides, videos and everything else.
It doesn’t have to be a massive headache.
Part of the problem is that you’re asking people to do something above and beyond what they’re being paid to do.
And, you’re probably not giving them any particular reason why they should.
So, getting employee buy-in to the content creation process is an essential.
If you are trying to get more people in your company to create content, here’s a few tips.
Reward best performing content
Businesses use incentives all the time to try and improve performance.
Salespeople get commission on closed deals.
Entire departments can receive performance based bonuses at the end of the year.
So why aren’t employees incentivised to create content?
Especially if it’s not part of their day job.
Instead of asking employees to write blogs or do videos and just putting them online, set up a monthly “league table” for content and reward those who create the best performing content.
It’s not difficult to set up a custom report in Google Analytics that can provide information on blog performance.
By providing some recognition and a reward scheme (it doesn’t have to be money) you can incentivise people to create content for you.
Plus, everyone loves a bit of friendly competition.
Make it a part of their job
Admittedly this is not the best option.
If you’re trying to get employee buy-in on creating content, forcing them to do it, might not work best.
But if you’re serious about your company doing content marketing properly, consider writing into employee contracts that they have to create content for your company.
Even if it’s just a blog a month, or a bi-weekly video.
Reward content that produces inbound leads
What’s the ultimate success metric for a piece of content?
If you’re measuring your content marketing properly, then the main metric is generating leads.
So if you really want to encourage employees to create content, offer reward schemes if a piece of content brings in a new lead.
Most businesses offer “finders fees” if you refer a customer into your business, so why aren’t these same fees part of the content process?
You can work out how you’d make this work for your business.
Reward schemes we’ve seen offer flat rates, or a percentage of the final retainer if an employee’s content was the first touch point a new customer had with your business.
Others offer rewards if a customer interacted with an employee’s content at any point of the buyer journey.
But you can work out what’s best for you.
Help them create content
If you’re asking employees to create content for you, don’t just ask them to “create some content”.
Like we’ve said, even the most seasoned content writers can struggle to come up with a topic.
Imagine how hard it is for someone who isn’t experienced at it.
Make it easier by having company brainstorm sessions, where you kick around ideas for content you need.
Or have your marketing department write up a list of content topics you need creating, and ask employees to pick topics they’d prefer.
Or, you could always just assign topics.
Whatever the situation, help your employees create content by supplying ideas.
Then give them advice and walk them through the creation process until they feel confident enough on their own.
Give them feedback
If you’ve ever created content for a business before, you’ll understand one of the most annoying things is creating your content, hearing nothing back, and then a few days later it’s live.
You’ve had no feedback.
You have no idea if what you submitted was any good.
And you have no idea why you’ve just created it.
If your employees are going to commit to creating content, commit to giving them feedback.
Give them training
A big risk with asking “non-content people” to create content for you is that you can end up with stuff that isn’t very good.
It can then take ages editing what you’ve got.
This is why you should consider hiring a content agency to manage the whole process, or to act as editors.
Don’t get us wrong, you’ll uncover some rough diamonds in your team who are good at writing or are a natural in front of a camera.
But if internal content creation is going to be a part of your company, you should seriously consider offering formal training.
If someone enjoys writing, sign them up for a copywriting class.
Or send a few people to workshops for shooting business videos on their phone.
Ideally you should have an internal content marketing manager overseeing your company’s content creation (if you don’t have one, get one) and you can use them to run internal workshops.
Give them some freedom
While not everyone in your company will be enthusiastic about the idea of creating content, at least not as first, you might find a few who have secretly wanted to write blogs or host a podcast for a long time.
If they want to do these things, don’t limit them by making them do what you want them to do.
Yes, you’ll have to make sure any podcast is good, and relevant.
But you can help your employees set it up and then help them make it better.
If you have an employee who hates the idea of writing 1,500 word articles, but is willing to do some explainer videos, sign them up.
Again, you can work out what works best for your business, but don’t handcuff your employees to the ideas you like.
Ultimately there are risks and benefits to keeping your SEO content creation in-house vs bringing in a professional agency or freelancer.
But if you’re going to encourage content creation in your business, understand that it will only succeed if you get employee engagement and give your staff a reason to create content for you.
If you want to see how this content creation fits into the wider SEO content strategy, have a read of our SEO content strategy guide here.